THOMASVILLE, GA. — Gene D. Lord, executive vice-president, plans to retire on April 24 after spending nearly 50 years with Flowers Foods, Inc.

“Gene has been a valued member of Flowers Foods’ executive team for many years and a driving force behind many of our company’s key growth campaigns,” said Allen L. Shiver, president and chief executive officer of Thomasville-based Flowers Foods. “Having been a mentor to many individuals who now hold leadership positions within our company, Gene also leaves a lasting imprint on the Flowers’ culture.”

Mr. Lord joined the company in 1966 as a route sales person for the company’s bakery in Thomasville. Since then he has served in many positions, including bakery president and regional vice-president. Mr. Lord was promoted to president and chief operating officer of Flowers’ Bakeries Group in 2002 and to executive vice-president and c.o.o. of Flowers’ Foods in 2008. He was named executive vice-president last July.